#13 Go Wild for Nature: Kids and Dirt Piles

Kids and dirt piles are like metal and magnets; there is no denying the attraction. Playing in a dirt pile is another way to go wild for nature. As children play with dirt, they are not only experiencing nature, they are learning about themselves. Our senses are part of our own nature and dirt appeals to them all. Children have high needs for sensory stimulation and dirt is a relatively ‘clean’ way to meet them. Dirt, after all,  does wash off.  Good thing kids are wash and towel dry.

nature play kids dirt pilesFor the sense of touch, hands are not the only part of the body that connects to dirt. Kids get dirt all over their skin and clothes. The texture of dirt can be gritty, scratchy, fine, soft, bumpy, powdery, and more. The top part of a dirt pile may be warm from the sun and cool underneath. It can be dry, damp, or wet depending on any moisture. In different amounts it goes from light to very heavy.

There is so much to see in dirt, like leaves, stones, or bits of bark. Bugs, insects, and other critters may make their homes is dirt. While dirt is mostly one color, kids can tell if dirt is dry or wet just by looking. There are lots of treasures for eyes in dirt.

nature play with dirt pile

Dirt can have a smell and many kids have tasted it, even tho this is something grownups discourage. A dirt pile doesn’t make a sound by itself, but there are noises connected with it as kids dig, pour, pat, and dump it out. There must also be a secret call that adults can’t hear but kids can, a sort of “come play with me” invitation that kids answer with glee.

For a nature play-of-the-day, how about kids and dirt piles? Is there one calling your child to play?

(123kindergarten invites you to come play everyday too and share the play-of-the-day with friends.)

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